In the first part of this article, we looked at several things that the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) recommends that we do in order to stay flu-free. Continuing on with their tips, the CDC also advises us to avoid close contact with sick people. Of course, if you are a parent with an ill little one this is easier said than done, but as much as you can, steer clear of the folks who arrive at work complaining of how yucky they feel.
Speaking of which, if you are feeling under the weather, please do yourself and everyone you work with an enormous favor and stay home! The CDC suggests that you stay in for at least 24 full hours after your fever is gone, unless you need to head to the doctor for care. And no cheating is allowed—taking two Advil and then claiming to be fever-free doesn’t count here folks—your fever has to be gone all on its own.
And finally, the CDC recommends heeding public health advice regarding school closures, avoiding crowds, and other suggestions to keep away from others to reduce the chance of spreading the flu.
The other two tips the CDC suggests to avoid getting the flu include getting a flu vaccine and, if your physician suggests it, taking anti-viral medications. The flu shot is one of those things that people seem to either love or hate, so if you’re in the latter group please bear with me here for a few minutes. The CDC points out that the flu vaccine is especially important for people who work in the health industry, and for young kids, pregnant women, and certain high risk groups like those with diabetes, lung disease, and people age 65 and up.
If you do come down with either seasonal flu or H1N1 flu, antiviral drugs that are designed to fight the flu by keeping the flu viruses from having a party inside your body and reproducing over and over. Like the flu shot, antivirals are often used on the high risk groups mentioned above. They may make your illness both shorter and not as severe. So if you do end up feeling like you’ve been hit by a bus, you may want to consider contacting your physician to see if this medication is an option for you.